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I heard a requiem sung-
And soon forgot,
For there came not
The years, which once seemed fleet,
But the doleful knell
Would often tell That another shade had fed in death's dark land to dwell.
Oh, thrice, thrice happy soul !
Can Hell bestow
A fiercer woe Than this, through countless years to die and still to know?
Now centuries had past ;
And the reapers tread
Above my head,
And there a forest sprang
But a fire at last
O'er the forest passed And each firm root decayed beneath the withering blast.
And there, deep, still, alone,
of the cheerful bird,
And the years stole by
Hark! thunder wakes the world,
Aye, He hath spoke
The trance is broke“ Ye Living.Dead arise !” Shuddering with fear, I woke.
THE ANNIVERSARY OF AMERICAN
BY THE HON. JONATHAN RUSSELL.
It is a magnificent spectacle to behold a great people annually crowding their temples to consecrate the anniversary of their sovereignty. On this occasion the heart of every true American beats high with a just and noble pride. He still hears the illustrious Fathers of his Country, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the World for the rectitude of their conduct, declare that the United States "are, and of right ought to be, Free and Independent.” The black catalogue of injury, abuse, contempt, and crime, which exhausted forbearance and drove us to resistance, rushes on his mind. He passes in review those great men who then burst upon the world, and who, endowed with every virtue and every talent which could fit them for the arduous task in which they engaged, appeared to be expressly commissioned by Heaven to rule the storm of revolution. It was then, indeed, that human nature, which for eighteen centuries had appeared nearly to have lost those qualities which alone ennoble it, emerged at once from its degradation, and recovered the lustre with which it shone in the happiest days of antiquity.
On the islands of the Adriatic, the mountains of Biscay, and the rocks of Uri, the spirit of Liberty had indeed successively sought a refuge ; but driven at last from all that could delight her on earth, she had already flapped her wings on the glaciers of Switzerland, and was taking her flight towards Heaven. The American people rose--they burst their fetters—they hurled them at their oppressors they shouted they were FREE. The sound broke across the Atlantic-it shook the fog-wrapt island of Britain, and re-echoed along the Alps. The ascending spirit heard it-she recognized in it the voice of her elect, and holding her course westward, she rejoicing saw her incense rise from a thousand altars. Her presence assured our triumph. Painful, however, was the struggle, and terrible the conflict which obtained that triumph-our harbors filled with hostile fleets—our fields ravaged-our cities wrapt in flames—a numerous veteran and unprincipled enemy let loose upon us—our army thinned by battles, wasted by sickness, disgusted by treachery and desertion—a prey to every species of privation, and reduced to the last misery next despair. Even then, however, this little army shewed themselves worthy the holy cause for which they contended. Driven from Long-Island—from the heights of Harlemfrom White Plains-pursued from post to post even to beyond the Delaware—they would often turn upon their insulting foe—and mingling their blood with the melting lava of the cannon's mouth, foretel them of Trenton, Germantown, and Monmouth.
But it was not in the ardent conflicts of the field' only, that our countrymen fell ; it was not the ordinary chances of war alone, which they had to encounter. Happy, indeed, thrice happy, were WARREN, MONTGOMERY and MERCER; happy those other gallant spirits who fell with glory in the heat of battle, distinguished by their country, and covered with her applause. Every soul, sensible to honor, envies rather than compassionates their fate. It was in the dungeons of our inhuman invaders ; it was in their loathsome and pestiferous prison-ships, that the wretchedness of our countrymen still makes the